Nesbitt finishes ninth overall at World All-Round Championships

Christine Nesbitt finishes ninth overall at World All-Round Championships

HAMAR, Norway
- Christine Nesbitt was the top Canadian at the Essent ISU 2013 World All-Round Speed Skating Championships in Hamar, Norway, finishing ninth overall after opting out the fourth race, the 5,000 metres.

After finishing fourth in today’s 1,500 metres, with a time of 1:57.47, Nesbitt stood in fourth place in cumulative points after three races. The London, Ont., native had 120.777 points, trailing top ranked Ireen Wust of the Netherlands with 119.017, Ekaterina Shikhova of Russia with 119.796 and Dutch skater Diane Valkenburg at 120.413.

The lowest cumulative point total determined the all-round champions after four distances. Wust won her third consecutive title with 161.530 points. Valkenberg took the silver medal with 163.120 points and Shikhova earned the bronze with 163.444. Brittany Schussler of Winnipeg of 11th overall and Regina’s Kali Christ was 12th.

In the 1,500 metres, Schussler stopped the clock at 1:59.90 for ninth place and Christ was 13th in 2:00.05.

Lucas Makowsky of Regina finished 17th overall, and Alec Janssens, of Chilliwack, B.C., was 20th. Makowsky skated the 1,500 metres in 1:49.15 for 14th place and Janssens was 19th in a time of 1:49.98. Neither skater qualified for the men’s final 10,000-metre race.

Defending champion Sven Kramer of the Netherlands was the men’s gold medallist with 149.228 points. Havard Bokko of Norway claimed the silver medal with 149.447 points, and Bart Swings of Belgium took the bronze with 149.800.

The next competition on the long track circuit is the Essent ISU World Cup #8 featuring all distances in Erfurt, Germany, from March 1 to 3. The Essent ISU World Cup Final is the following weekend, March 8-10, in Heerenveen, Netherlands. Heading into these last two World Cups, Canada has six skaters and both pursuit teams in the top 10: Jordan Belchos, 5th in the mass start; Ivanie Blondin, 3rd the mass start; Tyler Derraugh, 10th in the 1000 m; Gilmore Junio, 4th in the 500 m; Denny Morrison, 5th in the 1000 m; Christine Nesbitt, 2nd in the 1500 m, and 5th in the 1000 m; men, 4th in team pursuit; women, 1st in team pursuit.

The season wraps-up with the World Single Distances Championships from March 21-24. The competition will serve as an Olympic test event in Sochi, Russia.